Mayor Aspacher’s 2020 Strategic Goals (as presented to City Council)
- Develop and implement a plan to construct a new City Administration building
The City has recently executed an agreement with Poggemeyer Design Group and The Collaborative that will consist of an extensive assessment of the existing City Administration Building, the existing Senior Citizens building (which is owned by the City) and the City owned property adjacent to both of these buildings. This study will provide guidance on the long term needs to be considered when constructing the new City Administration building, will consider the historical relevance and significance of the old Post office building (Senior Center) and will identify the cost associated with preservation efforts. An important component of the process will include significant opportunity for public involvement in an effort to build community understanding and support for the project.
- The timeline associated with the project will in large part be determined by the progress of the construction of the new Wood County Senior Center. It is currently anticipated that this new building will be completed in 2021.
- The site and building assessment process will run parallel to the Senior Center construction process and is scheduled to be completed in the Fall of 2020. Upon completion of the assessment process we will immediately begin the design process for the new City Administration building.
- It is my goal to complete the design phase and be prepared for construction of the new building to begin in the Fall of 2021.
- I want to emphasize that we have been planning for this project for many years. Long term debt has been managed in way that this project will be paid entirely form capital project funding, meaning no money from the general fund will be spent on this project, and no additional revenue will be needed.
- Develop and implement a plan for a Designated Outdoor Refreshment Area (DORA) in the Downtown area.
Staff has already begun work on this initiative and I will continue to meet with representatives from major downtown events and Downtown BG stakeholders to discuss the proposed operating parameters for a DORA proposal. A required component of the review process will be for Council to schedule a public meeting. It is my goal that Council will approve the DORA application and it will be in place prior to the first FireFly event scheduled for mid-June.
- Coordinate efforts with the 2019 City Council goal of implementing a comprehensive review of the city’s zoning code with a particular focus on the newly proposed Gateway District zoning classification.
I am committed to working with Council to determine the focus of a comprehensive review of our zoning code. I am hopeful that a new zoning approach aimed at creating an atmosphere for economic development and creating community design standards will emerge. I am particularly interested in completing the review of the proposed Gateway District and have made clear my desire to have this process completed before the end of 2020.
- Complete the scheduled updates to the City’s website before the end of 2020
We have budgeted funds in 2020 for a fairly comprehensive update to the City’s website. I am hopeful this will result in improvements geared towards creating a platform that is much more user friendly, fully ADA compliant, and more easily navigated by citizens. I believe improvements here will allow us to be better able to respond to citizens questions and concerns in a timely fashion.
- Develop and publish a Request for Proposals for the sale of the Four Corners building that was purchased by the City in 2019
In 2019, the City purchased the old Wood County Bank building that currently houses the Four Corner entities. Along with the bank building we acquired the old Huntington Drive- through building and the adjacent parking areas. It is important that we sell the bank building prior to the end of 2020, we do not want to become landlords and assume the maintenance requirements of this building. The intent is to assemble the building for sale with the provision the Four Corner entities will remain in their current space (while paying a monthly rent consistent with market value). We anticipate there will be significant interest in the building and anticipate positive future development to occur.
- Begin discussion of a community exterior maintenance code.
I have long felt that the development of exterior housing maintenance standards is the logical next step in addressing neighborhood quality of life issues. Last year we significantly re-aligned our enforcement resources in an effort to assure better identification and follow-up on neighborhood nuisance issues. I believe we have seen the benefits of this change in process. I feel like we now need to create a standard for exterior home maintenance to bolster the enforcement effort, we need to give the enforcement personnel more tools for their toolbox. It will be important to frame this discussion in the proper way, as an entire BG issue as compared to an East Side or a rental property issue. We need to demonstrate our commitment to all of BG’s neighborhoods and apply the newly created standards uniformly across the City.
- 2020 Comprehensive review of sustainable programs and educational opportunities
We have an exceptional Sustainability Coordinator in Amanda Gamby, who has a tremendous amount of experience in both programming and education. I have asked Amanda to conduct a comprehensive review of the programs we currently offer as well as the educational opportunities we afford our residents. The clear and most obvious topic is the current “traditional” curbside recycling program, but also organics and electronic recycling as well as ways to empower residents to make informed decisions about where to properly dispose of unwanted items as an everyday solution.